GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Oxfordshire Walks

Please use the links below to view full route information including descriptions, elevation profiles, interactive maps and GPS downloads.

You can also view an overview map of all the routes in the using the Oxfordshire Walk Map


Route NamePhotoDistanceDescription
Aston Rowant Nature Reserve5 miles (8.5 km)Enjoy a circular walk around this wonderful nature reserve in the Chilterns and climb Beacon Hill on the way. The reserve is a splendid place for walking with miles of good paths taking you through woodland, chalk grassland and some lovely Chilterns countryside. It's a wonderful place for flora and fauna with flowers such as orchids, theChiltern gentian and various wildflowers. The attractive mixed woodland includes beech,yew, andjuniper.As for wildlife look out for Red Kites soaring above and butterflies such as thesilver-spotted skipperand theAdonis blue. You may also see Dartmoor Ponies, Roe deer, feral goats and buzzards.
This walk starts in the good sized Cowleaze Woodcar park and takes you through pretty bluebell woods before reaching Beacon Hill where you can enjoy wonderful views of the reserve and Chiltern Hills. The route then descends on the Ridgeway, before passing Bald Hill and returning to the car park.
If you'd like to continue your walking in this lovely area then you could head to the nearby Christmas Common and Watlington Hill where there is more beautiful flora and fauna.
Badbury Clump2 miles (3.5 km)This walk explores Badbury Hill and the lovely wooded area of Badbury Clump near Faringdon. There is a car park next to the site just off the B4019 between Faringdon and Coleshill. You can then pick up the trails through the bluebell woodland to the summit of the hill where there is an Iron Agehill fortknown asBadbury Camp. There are also nice views over the Vale of White Horseto the south and theThames Valley. You can continue your walk in the surrounding Coxwell Wood.
The route below is designed for walkers but the area is also popular with mountain bikers. There is a downhill course on the side of the hill with jumps, rollers, tabletops, drops and loamy corners.
If you would like to continue your walking in the area then you could visit the nearby Buscot Park. There's 100 acres to explore with woodland, lakes and formal gardens.
Battlefields Trail20 miles (32 km)This interesting walking trail links three of England's most significant Battlefields:
Edgcote (1469) in Northamptonshire
Cropredy Bridge (1644) in Oxfordshire
Edgehill (1642) in Warwickshire
It runs from Chipping Warden, Northamptonshire and ends in Kineton, Warwickshire, passing through some beautiful countryside along the way.
The first section of the walk takes you from Chipping Warden to Upper Wardington. On the way you will pass the site of the Battle of Edgecote Moor which was fought during the Wars of the Roses in July 1469. The battle pitted the forces of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, against those of King Edward IV.
From Upper Wardington you continue west to Warmington, passing Cropedy where the Battle of Cropredy Bridge was fought on 29th June 1644 between a Parliamentarian army under Sir William Waller and the Royalist army of King Charles. This section also includes views of the Oxford Canal and the River Cherwell.
The final section then runs from Warmington to Kineton, passing through the beautiful Edghill Country Park. The park is set in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and includes sixteen acres of mixed grass and primary Bluebell woodland. After passing through Ratley you soon come to the site of Battle of Edgehill. The battle was fought on Sunday, 23rd October 1642 and was the first pitched battle of the First English Civil War. Shortly after the walk then comes to at an end at the village of Kineton in Warwickshire.
The Battlefields Trust Website has a wealth of information on this route and the history of the Battlefields of Britain.
Bernwood Jubilee Way61 miles (98 km)Explore the Ancient Royal Forest of Bernwood on this circular walk devised to celebrate the Queen's Golden Jubilee. Bernwood Forest includes a mixture of woodland, pasture, meadow, heathland and picturesque villages. The walk is often started at Brill and heads to Boarstall, Buckingham, Waddesdon, Nether Winchendon, Quainton and Thame.
Highlights on the path include the National Trust owned Boarstall Tower. The attraction includes a 14th-century moated gatehouse and beautiful gardens.
Also of interest is Nether Winchendon House. This medieval Manor House is situated in a beautiful valley at the foot of the Chilterns and includes a 12th century Great Hall and a 16th century Dining Room.
The walk also passes the beautiful Waddesdon Manor (video below). Built in the style of a French chateau between 1874 and 1889 for Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild the house is also surrounded by formal gardens and an English landscape park.
There are also waterside sections along the Rivers Thame and Great Ouse through Buckingham.
The walk is waymarked with a yellow arrow.
Blenheim Park5 miles (8 km)This circular walk starts at the magnificent Blenheim palace and takes you on a tour of the beautiful gardens. The park includes 2,000 acres of Capability Brown landscaped parkland, the great lake, beautiful formal gardens, resident deer and a waterfall.
The palace is home to the 11th Duke and Duchess of Marlborough and the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. It is also a World Heritage Site.
Broughton Castle2 miles (3 km)Enjoy a short stroll around Broughton Castle and Broughton park on this interesting walk in Oxfordshire. The moated manor house is very picturesque with nice footpaths running across the surrounding grounds with good views of the north Oxfordshire countryside. You can also enjoy a stroll around the pretty Ladies' Garden with its variety of plants and flowers. The castle is only open on certain days so please check the website link below for opening times. You can walk around the pretty Broughton park at any time for free though!
The history of the house is very interesting with the core built in the early 14th century. It was a centre of opposition to Charles I and was besieged and damaged after the Battle of Edgehill in 1642. You can enjoy an excellent tour of the house with its grand rooms and furniture.
The castle is located just a few miles south west of Banbury. If you are coming from Banbury on foot or by bike you could follow the Salt Way track from the southern outskirts of the town.
Buscot Park1 miles (1.5 km)Explore the delightful grounds and gardens surrounding this fine 18th-century house near Faringdon in Oxfordshire. You can stroll through attractive woodland and visit the lovely water gardens with ornate statues and fountains. There are several pretty lakes and a wonderful walled garden with a variety of plants, trees and flowers. Each section of the garden has been designed to represent a different season. Smaller gardens includea citrus garden, a rose garden and a swinging garden.
If you would like to continue your walking in the area then you could visit the nearby Badbury Clump. Here you will find bluebell woodland and Bradbury Hill where there is an Iron Agehill fortknown asBadbury Camp. There are also nice views over the Vale of White Horseto the south and theThames Valley.
Chiltern Way124 miles (200 km)This is the original 125 mile circuit of the Chilterns AONB taking you through Hemel Hempstead, Chalfont St Giles, the edge of Marlow, Hambleden, Bix Bottom, Ewelme, the Ridgeway, Stokenchurch, Great Hampden, Aldbury, the Dunstable Downs, Sharpenhoe Clappers and Harpenden. The main attractions on the route are the series of delightful villages with their ancient churches, pretty village greens and fascinating museums. The Chilterns countryside is also beautiful with rivers, canals and the rolling hills to enjoy.
The walk is waymarked with yellow and white disc.
Chiltern Way Berkshire Loop28 miles (45 km)This walk runs from the outskirts of High Wycombe to Crowsley Park, near Henley on Thames. The route includes several long sections along the River Thames where you will pass a series of delightful riverside towns and villages. These include Cookham and then Henley on Thames, home to the famous annual regatta. The path also includes a couple of lovely wooded sections through Mill Wood and Cayton Park with the Chitern Hills providing a beautiful backdrop for the duration of the walk.
Claude Duval Bridleroute63 miles (102 km)This shared walking and cycle path runs from Quainton, near Aylesbury in Oxfordshire to Great Barrington in the Cotswolds.
This route is named after the well-known local highwayman, Claude Duval. It starts at Quainton and passes Stratton Audley, Bicester and Bucknell before crossing the Oxford Canal near Woodstock. The route then heads towards Chipping Norton and then Spelsbury where you join the River Evenlode for a short waterside stretch to Ascott d'Oyley. You then head onto Great Barrington via Fifield.
For cyclists a hybrid or mountain bike is required for this route. This is a fairly challenging route but with some fabulous Cotswolds scenery to enjoy.
Coleshill Estate7 miles (11.5 km)This National Trust owned estate near Swindon has miles of lovely walking trails taking you through attractive parkland and farmland.
The walk starts from the National Trust Estate car park at Coleshill. You then head south through the countryside to the woodland of Waterloo Copse and on to Waterloo Lodge. You continue past the 18th century Strattenborough Castle and then to Ashencopse cottage and Ashen Copse Woods. The route then heads to the prettty village of Great Coxwell where you will find the interesting 13th-centurymonastic barn. After admiring this old Costwold stone structure the route then heads west through the countryside back to Coleshill.
The route passes near to Badbury Clump. Here you will find bluebell woodland and Bradbury Hill where there is an Iron Agehill fortknown asBadbury Camp. There are also nice views over the Vale of White Horseto the south and theThames Valley.
Cotswold Round217 miles (349 km)Travel through some of the most beautiful countryside and prettiest villages in England on this circular walk. You will visit a series of classic Cotswolds towns and villages including Cheltenham Spa, Winchcombe, Stanton, Broadway, Chipping Campden, Moreton-in-Marsh, Stow-on-the-Wold and Bourton-on-the-Water (video below). There is much to enjoy with lush green countryside, historic houses, beautiful parks, woodland sections and homely country pubs for refreshments.
Cotswold Water Park10 miles (16 km)This fabulous attraction has numerous waterside cycling and walking paths taking you around the park's 150 lakes. There are 40 square miles to explore within the water park but with the Thames Path National Trail and National Cycle Network route 45 running through the park there is great scope for continuing your exercise along these trails (bike hire is available in the park). There is a wide variety of wildlife to see too - look out for otters, water voles and beavers.
The western section of the park shown in the map is located between Swindon and Cirencester. There is also an eastern section located near Fairford and Lechlade.
Donnington Way62 miles (99 km)Visit the 15 pubs of the Donnington Brewery on this super walk through the Cotswolds. The walk starts in Stow-on-the-Wold and heads to a series of delightful Cotswold villages including Bourton-on-the-Water, Naunton, Guiting Power, Broadway, Chipping Campden and Moreton-in-Marsh.
Farmoor Reservoir4 miles (6 km)Enjoy an easy circular walk around this pretty reservoir near Oxford. The walk starts from the car park and visitor centre on the eastern side of the lake. You then pick up the path which takes you to attractive woodland, Thames riverside meadows and nature reserves. The reservoir is an excellent place for birdwatching. Look out for Ospreys, Red Throated Diver and a variety of other water loving wildlife in the wetland nature reserves situated at the northern end of the site. It's a nice varied walk which runs for nearly 4 miles with great views of the surrounding countryside and the River Thames. You can also see a variety of watersports taking place for most of the year.
The Oxford Green Belt Way and the Thames Path both run past the reservoir so you could pick up one of these long distance routes to continue your walk. Just to the east is the delightful Port Meadow with walking trails by the Thames and Oxford Canal.
Harcourt Arboretum1 miles (2 km)This beautiful arboretum near Oxford has a series of well laid out footpaths to try. There's 130 acres to explore with wildflower meadows, rhododendrons and bluebell woods.
In the arboretum you will find giantredwoods, azaleasandmonkey-puzzletrees. Many of the trees have been introduced from thePacific North West region of North America. The lovely paths take you to the Serpentine Ride and peaceful glades. It really is a spectacular sight in autumn while in spring there are beautiful carpets of bluebells.
In addition to the woodland there is a 67 acre wildflower meadow with views of the surrounding countryside.
Look out for a variety of birdlife and the resident peacocks as you make your way through the grounds.
Harcourt is located near to the Thames Path so this is a good option if you would like to extend your walk. Both Abingdon and Oxford are nearby.
Jurassic Way88 miles (141 km)This walk follows the Jurassic limestone ridge from Banbury to Stamford passing through Northamptonshire,Oxfordshire and Lincolnshire.
The walk includes a stretch along the Oxford Canal from Banbury and another waterside stretch along the Grand Union Canal near Braunston. You will also enjoy fine views of the River Welland as you approach Stamford.
The route passes through a series of picturesque towns and villages including Wardington, Catesby, Braunston, Ashby St Ledgers (with its impressive Manor House),West Haddon and Middleton.
Please use the links below for handy pdf guides to the walk.
Jurassic Way section 1
Jurassic Way section 2
Jurassic Way section 3
Lambourn Valley Way22 miles (35 km)Travel from Oxfordshire into Berkshire along the Lambourn Valley Way and enjoy woodland, parkland and a series of quaint towns and villages.
The walk starts at the Bronze age fort at Uffington Castle and heads south, following the River Lambourn through Lambourn, Boxford and Speen before a lovely stretch along the Kennet and Avon Canal takes you into Newbury.
Macmillan Way290 miles (467 km)This long distance path links Boston in Lincolnshire to Abbotsbury in Dorset. It is promoted to raise money for the charity Macmillan Cancer Relief.
The route starts from Boston and then runs across the Fens to Bourne before joining the limestone belt. You then head to Stamford and then along the shoreline of Rutland Water to Oakham. The trail then heads south and west via Warmington to Stow-on-the-Wold, then into the Cotswolds via Cirencester and Tetbury to Bradford-on-Avon. After leaving the Cotswolds you follow the path through Somerset passing Castle Cary before entering Dorset and the final section to Abbotsbury via Sherborne.
The route joins with other popular trails including the Viking Way at Oakham, the Thames Path National Trail near Thames Head and with the South West Coast Path towards the end of the route.
The Macmillan Way is well waymarked with a green and white disc.
Mapledurham House4 miles (7 km)The Mapledurham estate is a wonderful place for a relaxing afternoon walk. The house is located on the River Thames with the picturesque Old Watermill right beside it. The mill is still operational and dates from the 15th century. The route below is circular, starting at the house and taking you on a tour of the woodland and countryside in the estate. The park is located near Caversham in Oxfordshire.
The estate is located on the Thames Path so you could continue your walk along the river. For example if you head east you will soon come to the delightful Caversham Court Gardens.
Otmoor5 miles (7.5 km)This lovely RSPB nature reserve consists of wet meadows, grassland and reedbeds. The area attractsthousands of wildfowl and waders such as lapwings and redshanks. You can also look out for a variety of dragonflies and butterflies. This circular walk follows good footpaths around the reserve with views of the River Ray and the surrounding Oxfordshire countryside.
The Oxfordshire Way runs past the reserve so you could pick this up to continue your walk. If you prefer you can visit the reserve by following the Oxfordshire Way from nearby Beckley. The route passes through Noke Wood and some nice countryside before reaching the reserve near Noke. You could also follow the trail west to the pretty village of Islip where you can enjoy lovely views of the River Cherwell and River Ray.
Oxford Canal Walk77 miles (124 km)Follow the Oxford Canal from Oxford to Coventry on this splendid waterside walk. You follow the towpath of the canal for the duration of the route meaning this is a fairly easy walk (providing you don't do at all at once!)
You will pass through Thrupp, Lower Heyford, Banbury, Cropredy, Braunston Turn and Rugby before finishing at Hawkesbury Junction in Coventry.
The peaceful south Midlands countryside, a series of pretty locks and several excellent canal side pubs make this walk a fantastic experience. Highlights include the delightful Port Meadow at the start of the route in Oxford, great views of the River Cherwell through Oxfordshire and the stunning gardens at Rousham Park.
Oxford Green Belt Way52 miles (84 km)The Oxford Green Belt Way was created by CPRE Oxfordshire to celebrate its 75th anniversary and 50 years of Oxford's Green Belt. The circular walk takes you through some lovely Oxfordshire countryside and historic villages, with peaceful waterside sections along the River Thames and the Oxford Canal.
The walk begins on the outskirts of Oxford and visits Horspath, Garsington, Abingdon, Kidlington and Beckley. There are excellent views of Oxford’s Dreaming Spires, Otmoor, Foxcombe Hill and Wytham Woods.
Attractions on the route include Harcourt Arboretum at Nuneham Courtenay. Here you will find a 10-acre woodland and a 37-acre meadow full of wild flowers.
The route passes the RSPB nature reserve at Otmoor where you can enjoy a nature trail and look out for thousands of wildfowl.
There are also lovely waterside stretches along the River Thames, the Oxford Canal and around Farmoor Reservoir.
For those interested in history the 12th century ruined abbey at Godstow is also of note.
Oxfordshire Way67 miles (108 km)Take a trip through Oxfordshire and enjoy rivers, canals, pretty villages and beautiful countryside on this lovely trail. The walk starts inBourton on the Water in the Cotswolds and passes Shipton-under-Wychwood, Wychwood Forest and Charlbury.
Palladian Way118 miles (190 km)Walk from Buckingham to Bath through the beautiful countryside of Buckinghamshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Wiltshire on this trail named after Andre Palladio's Italian architecture.
The walk runs from Buckingham to Brackley, Woodstock, Burford, Cirecncester, Malmesbury and then Bath.
You can enjoy waterside sections along the Oxford Canal near Kirtlington and along the River Windrush between Woodstock and Burford. There is also a section through the beautiful Cotswolds countryside around Burford.
Other route highlights include the National Trust Owned Stowe House and Gardens, and the magnificent Blenheim Palace - birthplace of Winston Churchill (video below)
Port Meadow4 miles (6 km)This lovely area in Oxford has nice walking trails along the Thames and attractive meadowland with grazing ponies and horses.
The walk starts from the car park near Jericho and follows the Thames through the meadow to Gorstow Lock and the remains of Gorstow Abbey. You then head past Wolvercote Common before returning to the car park.
It's a really pretty area with carpets of buttercups in the summer and a variety of wildlife to look out for. Horses, cattle and geese graze the meadow and various birds can be spotted around the water and meadow. It is thought that this area of the Thames is where Lewis Carroll first made up the story of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
If you'd like to continue your waterside walking in the area then you could pick up the Oxford Canal or the Thames Path which run past the meadow.
You can virtually explore the area using the street view link below!
Rousham Park1 miles (1.5 km)Explore the beautiful gardens surrounding this 17th century country house near Oxford. There are wide lawns, a variety of beautiful flowers, tranquil ponds, classicaltemples, follies and ornate statues. There are also nice shady woodland paths and meadows with grazing cattle.
The gardens are surrounded by beautiful Oxfordshire countryside with the River Cherwell and the Oxford Canal running past the site. It's a beautiful place and is perfect for a relaxing afternoon stroll in lovely surroundings.
You can extend your walking in the area by picking up the Oxford Canal Walk and heading to Lower and Upper Heyford.
Shakespeare's Way146 miles (235 km)This walk follows a route that Shakespeare may have taken when travelling between Stratford-upon-Avon and London. The path passes through the Chilterns, Oxford, Blenheim Palace, the Cotswolds, the valley of the River Stour and the Thames Valley making for a beautiful and varied walk. There are lovely waterside stretches along the Oxford Canal and the River Thames into London.
The walk is waymarked with a logo of Shakespeare's head.
Shotover Country Park3 miles (5 km)Shotover country park is a 289 acre site located on the outskirts of Oxford. It encompasses ancient woodland, flowery meadows, marshes, ponds, bracken-covered slopes and Shotover Hill where you will find splendid views across South Oxfordshire. There's a wide variety of flora and fauna in the park with Bluebells, Orchids, Woodpeckers, Foxes and Roe deer. There are a number of peaceful woodland walking trails and a bridleway for cyclists.
Spiceball Country Park2 miles (2.5 km)Enjoy an easy stroll along the Oxford Canal and the River Cherwell in this country park in Banbury. In the park you will find wildlife, wild flower meadows, community woodland and several areas of native trees and shrubs.
Thame Valley Walk15 miles (24 km)Follow the River Thame from Albury in Oxfordshire to Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire on this pleasant waterside walk.
The walk passes Shabbington, Long Crendon, Chearsley and Nether Winchendon.
The Thame Valley is home to an abundance of wildlife including reed warblers, cuckoos, damselflies and butterflies. Plant life and woodland also thrives making for a interesting walk for the naturalist.
Highlights on the path include the 15th century Nether Winchendon house and the 15th century church of St Mary at Long Crendon.
Click here for a route guide from Buckinghamshire cc.
The Swan's Way65 miles (105 km)The Swan's Way long distance bridleroute runs from Salcey Forest in the north to Goring on Thames in the south, a distance of 65 miles (105km). From the Northants border, the route crosses the Vale of Aylesbury to meet the Ridgeway near Princes Risborough and then follows the chalk slopes of the Chilterns to the Thames at Goring. It passes through varied countryside from beech woods on chalk scarp to low vales and ancient woodlands.
Please click here for more information on this route
Three Downs Link102 miles (164 km)This is a walking and cycling path following bridleways through Hampshire, Berkshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire. The trail runs from Exton, in Hampshire, to Dean Hill, near Hungerford. You will pass through open chalk downland, along rivers and canals and through some pretty villages.
The route passes through or near Basingstoke, New Arlesford, Malborough, Winchester, Newbury and Hungerford. It uses the South Downs Way National Trail for part of the route and also links with the Ridgeway National Trail. It is waymarked with a light blue arrow.
For cyclists a mountain bike is advisable as most of the route takes place on off road tracks.
Uffington White Horse2 miles (2.5 km)This circular walk visits White Horse Hill and the Iron Age hillfort of Uffington Castle near Swindon. The area is historically significant with the3000 year old prehistorichill figure and the hillfort located close together. The castle sits at a height of 860 feet (262m) above sea level making it the highest point in Oxfordshire. Also of interest is Dragon Hill, said to be the site where St. George slew the dragon. It's a very attractive area with chalk downland and lovely views over the Berkshire Downs. There is a White Horse Hill car park which gives direct access to the trail to the White Horse.
If you would like to extend your walk you can continue west along the Ridgeway to Wayland's Smithy. This fascinating Neolithiclong barrow is only about a mile from the hill. You could also head south and visit Ashdown House Estate. The National Trust owned estate has nice woodland walks and attractive grounds.
If you are on a bike you can visit White Horse Hill from the Ridgeway which runs past the site.
Waterperry Gardens1 miles (1 km)Explore the extensive grounds of the 17th century Waterperry House on this short walk near Oxford. In the grounds you will find a formal knot garden, trained fruit and nursery beds and a riverside walk along the River Thame. There are also nurseries, orchards, a plant centre and a teashop.
The Oxfordshire Way walking route runs past the gardens so this is a good option if you'd like to continue your walk.
Westbury Circular Ride12 miles (19 km)This is a circular walk or cycle ride around Westbury in Buckinghamshire. Route highlights include Turweston Airfield and Biddlesden House and Park. The house occupies the site of a Cistercian Abbey, founded in 1147 and sits behind a small lake.
There's also some lovely countryside and views of the River Great Ouse to enjoy. The route mainly follows country lanes and bridleways so for cyclists a mountain bike or hybrid is required.
Wokingham Way55 miles (89 km)This circular walk follows the Wokingham Borough unitary boundary visiting Reading, Bracknell and Henley on Thames. The walk takes you through Wokingham's most delightful areas including : Bracknell Forest, Tri Lakes Country Park, Wellington Country Park, the Iron Age hill fort at Crowthorne Wood and the deer park at Cudham Court. The walk also includes a long riverside section along the River Thames through Reading and Henley on Thames.
Wychwood Forest4 miles (6 km)Explore this large area of forest near Charlbury on this woodland walk. The forest can be reached from the nearby village of Finstock or from Charlbury. There are rail stations at both.
The forest consists of hundreds of acres of attractive woodland, pretty streams and a series of lakes and ponds. The area is also a nature reserve so look out for a variety of interesting flora and fauna. These include several species of wildflower such as celadine, kidney vetch and bluebells. These flowers attract butterflies such as Barberry Carpet and Pale Shining Brown.
Wychwood fair is a popular event which takes place in the forest at Cornbury Park. Thefairs are centred on rural communities and crafts.
The Oxfordshire Way passes through the area so you could pick up this long distance path to extend your walk. If you head east along the path you will come to Woodstock and the beautiful Blenheim Park. If you head north west from Charlbury you can enjoy a walk along the River Evenlode to Ascott-under-Wychwood.

Photos are copyrighted by their owners